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Term Definition

A specific asset digitized.

In the world of AI, the meaning of "token" can differ depending on the context. Here are two main interpretations:

1. Fundamental unit of data:

  • In this sense, a token represents the smallest meaningful unit of information processed by an AI system, particularly in natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning tasks. Think of it as the building block of text data, similar to how words are individual units in a sentence.
  • For example, when processing a sentence, the system might break it down into individual words or even smaller units like characters or subwords. Each of these units would be considered a token.
  • The specific type of tokenization method used depends on the task and the chosen AI model. Some common methods include:
    • Word-level tokenization: Each word is treated as a separate token.
    • Character-level tokenization: The text is broken down into individual characters.
    • Subword tokenization: Words are split into smaller, meaningful units like morphemes or prefixes/suffixes.

2. Security token:

  • In some AI applications, tokens can also refer to digital tokens used for authentication and authorization purposes. These tokens function like secure keys that grant access to specific resources or functionalities within an AI system.
  • This is particularly relevant in blockchain-based AI applications or decentralized networks, where tokens help ensure secure interactions and data access control.


  • In areas like AI-powered games or simulations, tokens might represent in-game currency, rewards, or assets within the virtual environment.
  • When discussing AI models themselves, "token" can sometimes refer to specific model parameters or weights learned during training.

Key considerations:

  • The specific meaning of "token" in the AI world depends on the context and the specific application.
  • Understanding the type of token used is crucial for interpreting the role it plays in the AI system's function or output.